The Death of Cleopatra
Giuseppe Mazzuoli, Italian (active Siena and Rome), 1644 - 1725
Giuseppe Mazzuoli created this terracotta sculpture as an advanced preparatory study for a marble group that he began for his own amusement. Much admired by Roman art lovers, the finished marble was acquired for the king of Portugal for placement in the garden of the Colonial Hospital in Lisbon. Like his teachers Melchiorre Caffa, Ercole Ferrata, and Gian Lorenzo Bernini, Mazzuoli normally made clay studies to perfect his designs. This study is especially interesting for the various techniques and degrees of finish it displays. It retains traces of a white pigment that was added at an unknown date, perhaps to protect the surface or to suggest the color of marble.
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